Title: Burn Our Bodies Down
Author: Rory Power
Release date: July 7th, 2020
“From the author of the New York Times bestseller Wilder Girlscomes a new twisty thriller about a girl whose past has always been a mystery—until she decides to return to her mother’s hometown . . . where history has a tendency to repeat itself.
Ever since Margot was born, it’s been just her and her mother. No answers to Margot’s questions about what came before. No history to hold on to. No relative to speak of. Just the two of them, stuck in their run-down apartment, struggling to get along.
But that’s not enough for Margot. She wants family. She wants a past. And she just found the key she needs to get it: A photograph, pointing her to a town called Phalene. Pointing her home. Only, when Margot gets there, it’s not what she bargained for.
Margot’s mother left for a reason. But was it to hide her past? Or was it to protect Margot from what’s still there?
The only thing Margot knows for sure is there’s poison in their family tree, and their roots are dug so deeply into Phalene that now that she’s there, she might never escape.”
“How to keep a fire burning. How to stitch a fight up until it’s only a scar. That’s the kind of thing you learn with a mother like mine. Mostly, though, you learn how to be loved without any proof. Seventeen years and I’m still getting that part wrong.”
This was incredible. Burn Our Bodies Down evoked so many emotions I wasn’t ready for, but made for an emotionally thrilling read.
Rory Power has a way of writing characters. The writing pulls you right into their lives and makes you feel what they’re feeling. You hurt when Margot hurts, you’re scared when Margot’s scared. And let me tell you, I was not expecting this story to go the way it did. I don’t know what I was expecting, really, but I definitely wasn’t disappointed by what this story gave me.
The book starts with Margot and her mother, where we’re shown how toxic the family is and see how Margot’s mother gaslights her. The dynamic between the mother-daughters may be the most complex relationship between a parent and child I’ve read in YA lit. And that’s just the start of it. Margot yearns to learn more about her family, and when she finds out she has a grandmother in Phalene, she runs off to discover the family she’s always wished she had.
The family she comes to know isn’t anything like she expected, and in Phalene, we’re pulled into a mystery. We’re given bits and pieces and slowly unravelling the secrets of Margot’s family. The pacing of this was perfect, and as the climax of the book happened, I was honestly so invested and anxious for what was happening that I couldn’t stop from there.
If you’re looking for a eerie and disturbing read about a complex, toxic family, this book is for you. Power’s writing is one of a kind, and if you liked Wilder Girls, I especially encourage you to check this one out.
*ARC received from OLA Superconference*
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